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Centaur transformation stories aren't nearly as common as full equine stories. Stephanie's work is not only a great story,|
but I love her invention of Gifford's Syndrome - a genetic disorder unique to artificially-created centaurs.
|Chapter 1||Chapter 2||Chapter 3|
She was obviously very fit, and had well-defined muscles rippling under her skin. Robert found the power of her body erotic. Often, he'd go out to where she was working and discreetly admire her. Several times they had passed with a few feet of each other, but he had never got the nerve to approach her. He was in love with all of her, from her flowing auburn hair down to her four powerful legs and tail.
Don't get the wrong idea, she wasn't a horse. Well, she was half of one. The first centaurs had appeared a few years earlier. Like the rest of the planet, Robert had been fascinated by them when they had first appeared, but he hadn't really thought that much more about them until now. It was reckoned that there was over fifteen thousand centaurs around the world. They were just another in the long line of benefits that Professor Anne Chamberlain's DNA altering process had produced. All the centaurs had originally been normal human beings, of course.
Since seeing his beautiful four-legged angel, Robert had become fascinated by centaurs. They were a tough people and even their human halves didn't need much clothing in all but the severest weather. The object of Robert's attention would rarely wear anything more than a simple bikini top, a utility belt and a hard hat. Her equine half was covered in dappled grey hair. Her human half looked very fit, but Robert spent most of his time watching her face. She had a wonderful smile that made her look more beautiful to Robert than anyone else he had ever seen. She wore her hair long, but she tied it back in a pony tail while working.
The only problem lay in how to approach her. Human/centaur relations weren't exactly unknown. While some people frowned on it, there was nothing legally against it. After all, in the eyes of the law they were all totally human. But his angel was always surrounded by other centaurs. If she had been alone, then perhaps he could have pluck up the courage to approach her, but he could never do it with other people around, especially centaurs.
And there the story might have ended, if it hadn't have been for a drastic change in Robert's situation. He was 'downsized' by his company along with most of his colleagues. It was as he was sitting by the window one day half reading the jobs vacant section of his paper, and thinking of his favorite centaur, that the idea occurred to him.
It'd be a radical lifestyle change, but he couldn't face going for another dreary office job. But how did you actually go about becoming a centaur? After some enquires he found himself filling out a seemingly endless series of forms in a faceless government office. DNA altering viruses were strictly controlled in an attempt to stop their use for illegal purposes.
"How long will I have to wait until I know whether I've been accepted?" Robert asked the official.
The bored official looked at him, "The waiting list is so long you'll probably have to wait nine months or so until your case is looked at. Then it could be anything up to a year before you hear if you've made it through to the second stage."
Robert left in a daze. He hadn't realized things were so bad. He would have to wait at least two years, and that was if he was lucky! He was so depressed he decided to head for a bar rather than go back home. The barman could easily see how depressed Robert was. As Robert drank he poured out his problems to the barman. The barman nodded and made the right noises in the right places, but he wasn't really listening. He had listened to tales of woe from his customers for over thirty years and he wasn't that interested.
While the barman was down the other end of the bar another man slipped onto the stool next to Robert's. "I heard you talking about your problem," the man said quietly. "The amount of bureaucracy is stupid isn't it?"
"Tell me about it," said Robert morosely. "Two years! Even then I might not get anywhere. She'll be long gone by then."
"There are other routes you can take," said the man. "Ones where you don't have to bother yourself with the inefficient government. Ones that guarantee what you want now, not years down the road."
Robert looked at the man for the first time, "What are you talking about?"
"Sshhh. Not so loud! There are other ways to become a centaur than just through the government."
"Yeah. Not legal ones, though."
"Well...no, not as such, but they guarantee you can become a centaur. Which is far more than you'll get from the government."
"True," Robert said. He knew that dealing with illegal DNA pushers was dangerous, but he was never going to become a centaur in time to reach the woman he loved without them. "Okay, how much?"
"Fifty thousand dollars," the man said.
"Fifty thousand!" Robert exclaimed.
The man shushed him and looked around to see if they had been overheard. Satisfied that no-one was paying attention he turned back to Robert. "I know it seems a lot, but you have to balance that against the risks I take and how much you want to achieve your dream. It'll also pay for your computer records to be altered. There would be too many awkward questions if you suddenly became a centaur without any of the documentation."
Robert thought long and hard. He could sell his apartment and still have quite a bit left over, but was it worth it? What else did he have to look forward to? Another soul-sapping office job? He knew he'd regret this for the rest of his life if he didn't do it. "I'll need some time to get the money together."
"Yeah, sure. Don't take too long though. I can't stay in one place for too long. I'll be here every night until the end of the week."
The next day Robert launched himself into selling his apartment. He managed to get a sale in a very quick time by dropping the price. Even so, it wouldn't go through before his time limit ran out, but a loan would cover him until the sale was finalized.
Robert was visibly shaking when he returned to the bar. He was afraid that the DNA pusher was either gone or would turn out to be an undercover cop. To his relief the man was still there. After a quick introduction, Robert showed the man his debit card. The amount on its display was just above what the man had asked for. In response the man told him to go to an address the following evening. He also took Robert's details so he could start editing Robert's files.
The address proved to be a deserted warehouse. The man was waiting there with a heavy metal suitcase. He opened it and showed some documents to Robert. The details were exactly the same except they showed that he had undergone DNA therapy to become a centaur. The man led Robert to a partitioned off area that might have been an office at one time. In it was some blankets and a large pile of food and water.
"What's the food for?" Robert asked.
"You'll need it to build up the mass a centaur has," the man replied. He pulled out a hypospray and injected it into Robert's arm. "That's all there is to it, just eat when you feel hungry and you'll be okay."
The man took Robert's card and debited fifty thousand dollars. Robert okayed the transaction and then pocketed the card.
Robert watched the man close his suitcase. He realized with a start that he could have injected with just about anything and that he could have been set up. Although, it was far to late to back out now.
The man turned as he was leaving, "Good luck," he said. "I suggest you strip now, before it gets too uncomfortable." He turned and hurried off.
Robert was about to follow when he started to feel a churning in his stomach. A tingling was starting in the lower half of his body. He quickly followed the man's advice and stripped his jeans and trainers off. The DNA transforming virus was already at work. His legs were far hairier than he remembered and they were changing shape before his eyes. His feet started to throb and Robert quickly sat down. His feet were starting to retract into balls and a hard surface was spreading across them.
Hooves! He was growing hooves. His eyes ran up his lengthening legs. They were certainly becoming far more equine in design. At least he hadn't been conned by the DNA pusher. Any other thoughts were pushed out of the way by his growing hunger. The DNA altering virus was running out or raw material.
Robert fell on the pile of food and started eating as fast as he could. He never felt full as the virus almost instantly utilized every morsel that he swallowed. Despite the hunger he felt he was still acutely aware of the changes is body was undergoing. His genitals moved down and behind their normal position as his rump started to expand.
His rump grew so quickly he had to lie on his side as he ate. It felt really odd to have such a large mass growing behind him. It felt even odder to actually feel things with it. He looked back and saw that his tail had already started to grow in.
He was about three-quarters of the way through the pile when he felt his second pair of legs start to grow in. They tingled as they grew in size and length to match his front legs. He felt them moving over the blanket as they grew.
Then, as quickly as it had started, it stopped. Robert put down
the loaf of bread he was eating and lay back on the floor. He could tell
without looking that it had been a success. He moved each of his four
legs in turn. Walking with four legs was going to take some getting used
to, he realized.
"So, you've never done work like this before?" the foreman asked.
"No," replied Robert. "I haven't long had this body."
The foreman thought about it. "Normally, I don't employ inexperienced centaurs, but I'm short of people at the moment. Wait here."
Robert watched the foreman, who was a fully standard human, go over to where a group of centaurs were working. One of them was the centaur of his dreams. He got a funny tingling in his hindquarters just thinking about her.
He had stayed at the warehouse for a further day trying to get used to his new body. He still didn't feel entirely certain with it, but he had to get to the building site where the object of his affections worked as soon as he could. His car was now useless to him and he had abandoned it and had walked across town to get to the building site. He had been very conscious of people looking at him as he walked. Robert had started to worry if he had done the right thing. Reversing most DNA viruses was extremely risky, but one that had changed him as extensively as this was as good as permanent. He had became slightly paranoid and wondered if they knew he had been transformed illegally. He had tried to calm himself down, reminding himself that centaurs were still fairly uncommon.
The foreman headed back over to Robert and he brought Robert's angel with him. "Sarah, this is Robert. Show him the ropes, will you?"
"Sure," said Sarah. "Welcome aboard, Robert." she said with a warm smile.
Her name is Sarah, he thought. He belatedly realized what she said, "Hi."
He followed her out onto the building site. "We're still at the stage where we're clearing the ground for the main construction work." She introduced him to the other four centaurs working there and then led him over to the office to fill out the paperwork.
The computer in the office seemed to accept his doctored identity card. Robert was still afraid that the authorities would catch up with what he had done. So far, however, everything seemed to be going well. His huge gamble was paying off. He was going to be working alongside the woman of his dreams. Now that he was on a level playing field, he would have a fair shot at Sarah. Her name kept rolling around his head and he had a hard time concentrating on what she was telling him.
As he finished filling out the forms he felt a need to go to the bathroom. That was something that was rather different for a centaur than a normal unchanged person. He had been shocked by the amount of mess he had produced the first time he had gone to the toilet as a centaur. "Could you tell me where the bathroom is, please?" he asked Sarah.
"Sure. Follow me." she said.
She led him over to a secluded corner where some straw had been spread out. Robert's nose told him it had been used. "That's it?"
"Well, things are pretty basic out here. Obviously, a chemical toilet would be pretty useless to us here. You haven't been a centaur long, have you?"
"No," Robert admitted. "I only changed a couple of days ago."
"And they let you out of the transformation institute that quickly?" Sarah asked in amazement.
Robert realized his error, but he could hardly change his story now. "I insisted. How long have you been a centaur, if you don't mind me asking."
"Not at all. I was among the first batch of people to undergo the process, four years ago. Best decision I ever made."
They stood for a few more moments. Then Sarah asked, "Are you going to have a shit or are we going to stand here all day?"
"Not with you watching!"
Sarah laughed. "You're going to have to get used to our attitudes, Robert. But just this once, I'll give you some space."
Robert watched her walk off. She was even more beautiful close-up, and in perfect physical condition. He sighed and lifted his tail. The feelings were fairly similar, though he had to shift a far higher volume than he was used to. Even though he knew a centaur needed more food, he was still surprised by the amount he had to eat. A centaur's food bill must be enormous.
When he had finished, he walked over to where Sarah was waiting. "Okay. Now, all you need is a physical," she told him, "and you'll be able to start work. I'll give you the name of my doc."
"Thanks," said Robert.
"You got yourself changed illegally, didn't you?" Sarah asked suddenly.
Robert stopped dead. He felt a chill run right down his spine. She knew. All his plans were going to fall apart. She would turn him in and then all this would have been for nothing. He looked up at her face and desperately tried to think of something to say.
"You got yourself transformed illegally," Sarah said. "Admit it. I can tell."
"I-it's not true!"
"Sarah shook her head. "Yes it is. Why else would you be walking about without any shoes on?"
Robert looked down at his hooves in confusion. Of course he didn't have any shoes.
Sarah realized that Robert hadn't understood. "shoes. Even if they had let you out of the institute after twenty-four hours, which they wouldn't, they wouldn't let you walk around without shoes. You'd could really damage your feet that way if you're not careful."
Robert was only just beginning to realize what a leap into the dark he had taken. He knew far less than he had thought about life as a centaur. Now, he had fallen at the first hurdle. The government did its best to best to regulate DNA viruses. That meant Robert could expect a jail term and a heavy fine if caught.
"Please, don't tell anyone!" he pleaded. "I just wanted this so much!"
Sarah put a hand on his bare shoulder. "Hey. Relax, I've no intention of telling anyone."
He looked up at her in hope. "You haven't?"
"No," she said with a reassuring smile. "As far as I'm concerned, the more centaurs around the better. We'd better get you something for your feet and I'll keep an eye out for you. Why didn't you go through the official routes?"
"I couldn't wait two years! I could have wasted all that time and still not have become a centaur."
Sarah put an arm around him and guided him towards the other centaurs. Their flanks occasionally brushed together as they walked. The contact was turning Robert on. He was slightly worried that his arousal would become obvious to everyone. It was easy to disguise a hard-on when you had on a pair of pants. When you had nothing on from the waist down, and you were literally hung like a stallion, however, the problem was more acute. Fortunately, he didn't feel the familiar sensation of his member swelling. If the other centaurs had been further away and it had taken longer to reach them, then the story might have been different. Robert was almost glad to reach them when he did.
Sarah introduced him to the others. As the foreman had said, they were rather understaffed and there were only three other centaurs working on the large site. There were two females and one male. Barney, the older African-American centaur was married to Gina, the elder of the two other females. The remaining centaur was a blonde called Jenny.
Robert was introduced to them. Sarah didn't say anything about his illegal status, but she did tell them he had only recently become a centaur. Sarah wouldn't let him do much work that day, mainly because of his lack of experience. Robert found himself doing menial tasks while he was shown what was expected of him. He was surprised to find himself enjoying the work. It was such a change to be out of the office and doing something worthwhile.
They didn't finish work until night was falling. Robert's muscles were aching, but not as much as they would have been in his old body. The DNA virus had obviously toned up his body considerable as it had transformed him.
"Do you have a place to stay?" Sarah asked him as they left the site.
"Yeah, I do," Robert replied, "but it's on the seventh floor. I'm in the process of selling it."
"Don't blame you. Stairs can be a nightmare. I'm sure there's a spare room at the hostel we're staying at."
"Built for centaurs?"
"Not just centaurs," said Sarah, "there's quite a niche market for hotels for modified people."
"I suppose there would be. It never occurred to me before."
Sarah tilted her head and looked at him curiously. "You don't strike me as the sort of person who'd become a centaur. Most newly-transformed centaurs have spent months or years learning every single thing about life as a centaur. You're different."
Robert couldn't really tell her the main reason he had become a centaur. That he had a crush on her. He knew she wouldn't consider that a good enough reason take the risks he had. In fact, she would probably be quite angry to learn that he had done it all simply to get closer to her. "I hated my job. Not just the job specifically, but all the office jobs I've had. I just had to get out, and this seemed the best way."
"I just hope you know what you're doing. There's no way back, you know. You'll have those hooves till the day you die."
The hostel was some distance away, but they covered the distance amazingly quickly. Sarah and the others kept their speed down because of Robert. He hadn't moved this fast before in his transformed state, but he felt comfortable going at that speed. he was beginning to feel far more comfortable now. People still turned to watch them go by, but he didn't feel self-conscious now he was with other centaurs. Earlier he had worried that he had rushed headlong into a big mistake, but Sarah seemed really friendly and they appeared to be getting on well. Robert just hoped fervently that she didn't have a boyfriend or husband at the moment. One thing at a time, though. Today had been more than successful enough. He had made friends with Sarah.
The hostel was surprisingly large. Sarah pointed out that centaurs needed to build their houses bigger for obvious reasons. A bar was built into the first floor, with the centaur rooms directly above. Above them were smaller rooms for the other kinds of transformed humans.
The bar wasn't packed, but it was fairly lively. Robert's eyes widened at the collection of altered people. As well as several more centaurs, there were a couple of angels and the odd half-human/half-animal specialist person. Barney got the drinks in and Robert was surprised at the size of the glasses.
"They hold about two pints each," Sarah told him.
"I suppose we need a bit to get us drunk," Robert replied.
"It can be done quite easily. I remember the first time I got really smashed as a centaur. My legs were all going in different directions. They had to leave me to sleep on the floor where I had fallen. The hangovers are killers though." She smiled. "Anyway, there's a specialist in centaur medicine I know just out of town. He'll give you a once over and get you some shoes."
Robert dredged through his memory. "Don't they nail them to the hoof?"
"Well, you can have that done if you want," said Sarah. "There's quite a few centaurs who want proper old-style horseshoes. Frankly, I'd never let anyone nail anything to me. I've never even had my ears pierced."
Sarah slipped something off of her hoof and bent down to pick it up. It was a tricky manoeuvre for a centaur in an enclosed space, but she managed it gracefully without any trouble. Robert remembered that she had been a centaur longer than nearly anyone else.
She put the shoe on the table so Robert could see it. "You just slip it on," she explained, "and it's very secure. Horse's hooves were never designed with streets in mind. These have rubber built into them to cushion the blow." She took the shoe back and put it on. "They're costly, but worth it in the long run."
"So how is life like as a centaur?" Robert asked.
"That's the sort of question you're supposed to ask before you get yourself transformed." Sarah replied with a giggle. "I was always fascinated with horses and I rode from an early age. When this process came available I leapt at it. Back when I got transformed there were barely fifty centaurs in the whole world. Now that's grown to about fifteen thousand. I never thought there would be so many. My mom had a fit when she found out what I was planning to do."
"How do they feel about it now?"
"They got used to it. Dad is fine about me, but Mom still doesn't really approve. She hides it well though. Do you have any family?"
"My mother lives out in Texas. We're not close at all."
"I'm sorry to hear that."
Robert shrugged. "It's ancient history."
As the evening progressed Robert worked his way through several of the two-pint drinks. He was amazed at the capacity of his new stomach. The beer didn't seem to be affecting him that much either. That wasn't really surprising considering the much larger size of his new body.
Later on Robert and the other centaurs moved to a larger table where they consumed a large amount of food. It was an entirely vegetarian meal. Robert had enjoyed meat before his change, but now he didn't find it that appetizing. He guessed that his new form wasn't designed to eat meat, but he couldn't ask Sarah such a basic question with the other centaurs around.
Sarah had booked him a room. In the rush of the day's activities he had forgotten he needed to do that. It was late into the evening when they finally decided to got to bed. He found he was a little unsteady on his feet when he started to walk. He was alright standing still, but moving all four legs in the right order was suddenly more difficult.
Sarah noticed Robert's unsteadiness and helped him to stay balanced. "I should have given more time to get used to your new body before getting you drunk." She led him up the wide sloping ramp that led up to the next floor. "Tomorrow is Saturday. We'll get you some shoes and I'll get my friend to give you a check-up. Okay, Robert?"
"Fine," Robert replied. He was aware of how close he was to Sarah. His alcohol-addled mind wondered what sex was like as a centaur. Was the experience more intense because the genitalia was so much larger. An image flashed through his mind of rearing up onto her back. His hindquarters started tingling again, but he didn't care.
Sarah showed him his room. "Thanks for everything you've done for me today," he said.
"Hey, no problem."
On an impulse he leaned over and kissed her cheek. "You've done far more than you had to."
Sarah smiled. "We centaurs have to stick together, don't we? Now, go to bed and sleep the booze off."
He nodded and went into his room. Sarah smiled and shook her head. He was cute, though. She laughed it off. She had barely known him for half a day, but his naivete was a breath of fresh air. She turned and headed to her own room.
In his room, Robert was looking around him. It was a fairly large room, but there wasn't much in it. Just a large bed, a window and a portable TV. He went over to the bed. It was a water bed covered in a durable looking cover. Well, that answered the question about whether centaurs slept standing up or lying down. He kneeled unsteadily and then edged his way onto the bed. After quite a bit of shuffling he managed to get all of his bulk on the bed. This wasn't too bad. In fact, it felt quite comfortable.
He looked back down the length of his body. He was still astounded with himself for going through with it. Yet it had paid off. He and Sarah had clicked. He was sure of it. He was exhausted from the day's activities and any other thoughts were lost as he quickly fell asleep.
Robert was glad that the next day was the start of the weekend. His head was pounding and he felt a little woozy. He felt a need to use the bathroom and it took him a little while to locate it. Again, it was outside. Robert was glad to see it was a proper toilet modified for centaur use and not just some straw on the ground.
Sarah was already up and about. After another hefty meal, she said it was time to set out to get Robert some shoes. They left on foot. Robert was still amazed at the speed he could reach. They didn't press themselves to the limit, partly to avoid risking Robert's bare hooves, but mostly to avoid getting a speeding ticket. They were already on the edge of town and Sarah led him straight out into the countryside.
The morning hadn't got too warm and Robert was really enjoying himself. He was becoming more and more convinced that he had made the right choice in becoming a centaur.
The road gave way to a dust track and they cantered up to a farm. Robert could tell as soon as they arrived that the house had not been designed and built with a two-legged human in mind.
"You didn't tell me he was a centaur," Robert said.
"You didn't ask. Stands to reason, though, doesn't it?" She looked at one of the surrounding fields and waved. "Don't mention that you didn't get transformed legally," she told Robert. "You might get away with it, but it isn't worth the risk, and it would put me in an awkward spot."
Robert turned to look and saw a centaur running at full speed across the field to meet them. "Don't worry," he said, "I won't say anything."
The new arrival was in his late thirties. he was going bald, but had a hairy chest to compensate. "Sarah!" he called, "I haven't seen you in a while."
"Sorry, Nick," Sarah replied, "I've been busy lately. I need to ask a favor. My friend, Robert, needs a set of shoes and a basic medical. He started work yesterday and he needs a check-up and a new set of shoes."
Nick and Robert shook hands. Then the doctor took them round to the house. Nick took measurements of Robert's hooves. He told Robert that he had a pair of shoes he could adjust for him.
"Why don't you two go out for a bit," Nick told them. "This will take a while."
"Good idea!" Sarah replied. "Come on Robert." She led Robert back out into one of the fields. "Shall we see how fast you can go?"
"I don't know. Is it alright to try it without shoes?" he asked cautiously. He was very curious to see what he could achieve at full speed.
"Course it is! This is the terrain your feet were designed for! You'll like this. I remember the first time I really pushed myself." She started moving forward in a trot. "Come on! Match yourself to me."
Robert moved alongside Sarah, matching her speed. Slowly she started to run faster. He had little difficulty in keeping up with her. Almost without realizing it, he was racing around the field, his hooves thundering into the ground. He ran to the end of the field and turned smartly. He was amazed at his power. He was going so fast the fence was a blur. He was doing this without the aid of any machine, just the power of his own body.
Finally, he slowed to a stop. His entire body tingled from the exertion. Sarah pulled up alongside him and they smiled broadly at each other. Neither could speak for a few moments as they were gulping in huge amounts of air to fill their large lungs.
"That was fantastic!" Robert finally said in amazement.
"You can do so much more with that body than you could with your old two-legged one. You're stronger, faster and probably better looking than you were before."
Robert was startled by that last remark. Was the woman of his dreams showing some interest in him, or was she just being playful? She grinned and galloped away. Robert chased her across the field. She was far more agile and faster than him and he was unable to catch her.
Some time later as they passed the house, they saw Nick waving from the window. "He's got the shoes ready," Sarah said. "Probably best if we have a quick shower first. You smell."
Robert saw that both of them had gotten sweaty during the run through the field. "You're no bed of roses yourself." he retorted.
She pointed to a basic shower attachment by the side of the house. As they headed towards it, she called out to Nick to get some towels.
"Don't you people do anything indoors?" Robert asked.
"Where's the fun in that?" Sarah asked back. "Most of the people who want to be centaurs are outdoors people. Anyway, our bodies are far more durable than they were before." Without warning, she turned the shower faucet on him and blasted him with cold water.
He shouted in mock anger and tried to wrestle the faucet from her. Both of them were soaking wet within seconds. It stopped suddenly when they accidentally looked deep into each other's eyes. Robert was certain he could see desire in her emerald eyes.
The moment was broken when Nick appeared. He smirked at the startled look on the other two centaurs. Then he tossed two large towels to them. "I've got a set of shoes that should fit you fine, Robert. You ready for your check-up?"
"Yeah," Robert replied, "but to be honest I feel better than I have in years."
While Sarah waited outside, Robert and Nick went through to a small examination room. "I have a lot of centaurs on my books. Most of them prefer having a doctor who is a centaur as well."
Nick ran a few tests on Robert. He listened to Robert's lungs and pronounced them sound. "Have you been a centaur long?" Nick asked.
"I only got out of the institute a week or so back." Robert hoped the doctor would be satisfied with that.
"Oh, so this will be your first job as a centaur, then?"
Nick checked Robert's body all over to make sure it had formed properly. "To be honest," Nick said, "this is mostly a formality. Most problems in the transformation process would kill you instantly. If you get this far with no problems, then you're probably fine. Though I always suggest that all my patients have regular medicals. Just in case."
Robert felt embarrassed as Nick moved around to his rear and began examining his private parts. "Oh," Nick commented slightly surprised, "I hadn't noticed you had Gifford's Condition."
Robert's heart skipped a beat. What the hell was Gifford's Condition? He couldn't ask the doctor because he should already know. At least he probably would if he had been transformed legally.
"How are you coping with it?" Nick asked.
"Okay," he replied. "It hasn't caused a problem yet." That much was the truth anyway as he hadn't known he had it until that moment.
"It must have been a bit of a shock finding out." Nick said.
You got that right, Robert thought sourly.
"Anyway, as you've probably been told, no centaur puts any stigmata on this condition. About five percent of the centaur population have the same condition and it doesn't in anyway hinder their lives."
Nick didn't sound at all worried to Robert. That meant his condition couldn't be that serious, but he wished he knew what the condition was. Nick carried on inspecting the rest of Robert's body before pronouncing him sound.
Sarah was waiting for them outside. "So how is he, doc?" she asked.
"He's in perfect condition," Nick pronounced.
Robert was glad the doctor didn't mention his condition. He wanted to find out something about it before he even considered telling Sarah. Robert paid for the shoes and had to be helped into them.
"There's a knack to it," Sarah told him, "you'll get the hang of it in a few days. In the meantime, I'll just have to give you a helping hand." She smiled at him again. Robert was convinced there was more than just friendship in it. Or maybe he was just hoping there was.
They thanked the doctor and set off back to town. The shoes felt odd, but they did cushion his feet against the hard surface of the road. He was alone with Sarah again. His spirits were dampened by the uncertainty of 'Gifford's Condition' hanging over him. He wouldn't be comfortable until he knew how exactly it effected him. It couldn't be too bad however, or the doctor would have been concerned.
"Have you decided where you are going to live once you've sold your apartment?" she asked him.
"Not really, but I haven't a clue where I'll move to."
"I'm getting a little tired moving around from one building job to another. Maybe I'll look for another job and settle down."
They made good time back to the hostel. Sarah wanted to do some shopping, but Robert said he felt tired and wanted to have a lie down. Once back in his room, Robert switched on the TV and accessed the data channels.
For a small fee he was able to access one of the on-line encyclopaedias and download all the information it had on non-mythical centaurs. He didn't want to waste time going through reams and reams of Greek myth.
There was a surprising amount of material, but he quickly narrowed down his search to the references to Gifford's Condition. The first reference he came across was frustratingly vague. It mentioned that a significant minority had the condition, but that cases of it occurring were much rarer these days, thanks to a new version of the DNA Centaur Virus.
The next reference he came across was a medical textbook. Robert had a hard time following some of the details. "The complexities of the DNA virus," read Robert, "means that occasionally the morphogenic process may diverge from the correct path. The most common condition is also the least harmful." Well, that was good news. "It is named after Arthur Gifford, the first centaur to have this condition." There followed some pictures of Arthur Gifford and some more of his rear end. "As can be seen in fig 1, the human half of the transformation has worked as expected. The equine segment however has undergone a divergence from the expected template."
Robert stopped reading. He had finally worked out what was bothering him about the pictures of Arthur Gifford's anatomy. He walked over to the wall mirror and lifted it from its mountings. He carefully laid it on the floor and then walked over it.
Bending forward and looking down between his legs at the mirror, he could see his the underside of his rear for the first time. His anatomy was similar to the ones in the photos. He should have been hung like a stallion, but there was nothing there. Nothing at all. Thinking back, he couldn't remember having an erection since his transformation.
He lifted his tail and peered into the mirror. It was difficult
to get a clear view, but he could see enough. His head span as his worst
fears were confirmed. As he staggered upright he stepped on the mirror
and it cracked. Robert didn't care, he already had far more than just
seven years bad luck.
How could he have any hope with Sarah now that he was a girl? His insane gamble had failed after all. He was stuck for the rest his life as a centaur. As much as he had enjoyed the power of his new form, the knowledge that he was now female took all the fun out of it.
What was he going to do for the rest of his life? There was no way he was going to ever use his new equipment. The idea of having sex as a mare disgusted him. He wondered if there were lesbian centaurs around?
He spent most of the rest of the weekend in the hostel room. Sarah was concerned, but Robert told her he was okay. Only the need to earn money persuaded him to go back to Sarah's work place on the Monday morning.
Sarah was becoming increasingly worried over Robert. She had barely known him a few days, but she had found his naivete refreshing. There was no doubt something had clicked between them, but since the visit to Nick that Robert had virtually disappeared. She made sure she was working with him that day as they cleared the last of the trees. He did as he was told and learnt quickly, but Sarah was lucky to get more than a dozen words out of him all day.
She lagged behind the other centaurs as they returned to the hostel that evening so she could talk to Robert. "It hurts to see you this way. What's the matter? Do you want to talk about it."
Robert sighed, "No, I can't do anything about it anyway."
"I always think that sharing troubles helps to defeat them."
"I'm not sure discussing it with you would be a good idea."
"What's that supposed to mean?" Sarah asked.
"It's not your fault. It's just that I wasn't straight with you about all the reasons for becoming a centaur in the first place. What I said about being bored with my job and my life is all true. But there was one more reason that made me choose to become a centaur."
"Which is?" she prompted.
"I used to drive along this road on my way to work," Robert said, "and every day I'd see you working here."
"Whoa! Let's get this straight. You did all that just so you could get closer to me?" Sarah couldn't believe what she was hearing.
"I know. It's only now that I realize how stupid I was to do this."
Sarah was dumbstruck. On one hand it was flattering to be so desired that a man would turn himself into a centaur just to get closer to her. On the other hand it was an insanely stupid reason to so radically change the whole direction of his life. "...and this is the reason you've become so withdrawn. You've realized, too late, that a centaur life isn't for you?"
"No! There is a freedom with this form that I've never felt before. I never realized how great it was to be a centaur. I've never been happier than when we were charging about that field."
"So it was something that Nick told you?"
When she realized he wasn't going to add to that Sarah asked, "Well? What is it? Come on, Robert. I don't like seeing you this miserable."
Robert stopped and leaned over to Sarah. He checked up and down the street before speaking. "I found out I have Gifford's Syndrome," he said in an quiet and embarrassed tone.
Sarah looked puzzled for a few seconds and then her eyes widened in realization. "You mean, you didn't know?"
"Of course not! I was still getting used to having four legs. I didn't know anything like this could happen!" he stopped and frowned at her. "Wait a minute, you're not surprised. You already knew! Nick told you!"
"He didn't tell me anything! You only have to look to realize you had Gifford's Syndrome."
Robert's face drained of all color. "You mean any centaur can tell I'm...female?"
"Yeah, and quite a few unchanged people as well."
"Oh my God!" He exclaimed, looking very shaken.
Sarah belatedly realized that Robert had no idea that his condition was obvious to so many people. "As Nick must have told you, no centaur discriminates against centaurs with the condition. It's a risk we all took when we were transformed. The vast majority of unchanged humans won't be able to tell."
"But how am I supposed to live with this? I've been disfigured for life!"
Sarah put an arm around him to console him. "I'm sure everything will work out. You got yourself turned into a centaur without any real thought and things haven't turned out that badly, have they? You're healthy and you've said you prefer the lifestyle over your old job. You could have ended up in a far worse position."
"Could I?" he asked her a little more sharply than he had intended.
"Yes!" she replied emphatically. "The DNA virus you got from the pusher could have killed you. Or something even worse could have happened. I heard of a DNA pusher who was passing off a basic horse virus as a centaur one."
Robert looked at her in horror. "You mean they were turned totally into horses?"
"Yeah. The police reckon he transformed at least eight people before he was caught."
"I never realized the risk I was running." Sarah was right, things could be far worse, but this was bad enough. "But what am I going to do now?"
"Live your life. It seems like the end of the world, Robert, I know how you feel, but life does go on."
Robert nodded, but didn't seem that convinced.
Over the next week, Sarah did her best to keep him occupied and stop him brooding on his problem. She wasn't doing it entirely for Robert's benefit. Despite his problem, Sarah found he made an attractive centaur. As the week passed, Robert seemed to lift out of his depression, but Sarah could still see he was upset over what had happened to him.
She was sure that given time he could get over it. He was far from the first centaur to suffer from it. Many other centaurs had it and had gone on to lead happy lives. Robert was also a little embarrassed over his admission of why he had become a centaur in the first place. Sarah would joke at his expense about it, though she was always careful not to make it look like she thought it was a stupid thing to do. His ego was at a low ebb as it was.
For his part, Robert enjoyed the attention he was getting from Sarah. This was what he had been after in the first place anyway, but he still felt the whole thing was spoiled by the fact that they could never be more than friends. Girlfriends at that.
At the end of the week he and Sarah were out the back of the hostel enjoying the last few days of summer. "I'm going to my sister's for the weekend," Sarah announced out of the blue. "Do you want to come too?"
"Well, I don't know..."
"No arguing, you need cheering up."
Robert didn't really feel like doing anything, but he'd rather stick with Sarah than spend the weekend alone. He'd been feeling a little odd towards the end of the week and he didn't know quite what to put it down to. He felt he had got over the initial shock of his discovery, but he was still depressed by the way his life had taken such an unexpected turn.
"Your sister won't mind me, what with my condition and all?" Robert asked.
"No," Sarah replied adamantly," she won't care! You won't be the first centaur she's met with the condition."
"Great, she'll be here in half an hour to pick us up. Just time to stretch our legs. Her truck will be a bit cramped with two of us." She kicked off and charged away from Robert.
He grinned and tried to catch up with her.
Sarah hadn't been joking. Her sister's truck had been designed for holding just one centaur, but two could just fit in it. The back was open to the elements, though thick roll bars welded to the truck would protect Robert and Sarah in an accident. "My husband fitted them," Sarah's sister explained.
Her name was Jennifer and she had a strong family resemblance to Sarah. There was barely enough room in the back for Sarah and Robert, but they managed to squeeze on it together. The entire length of Robert's flank was pressed against Sarah's. Despite himself, he found himself getting more than a little turned on. Now he knew exactly what he had between his hind legs he could understand what he was feeling much better. He tried to hide his arousal from Sarah, but it wasn't helped by the way she put her arm around him during the journey.
If he had been pressed against anyone else than Sarah, he wouldn't have been able to stand it, but even though they could never be more than friends he still cared for her deeply. He knew he was going to have to accept they'd never be more than friends, but the time they had spent together had only made him fall more in love with her.
"Jennifer and her husband have this great farm," Sarah explained. "You can run for miles."
Robert found himself looking forward to the weekend away in the countryside. If only to take his mind off his troubles. Jennifer's home was thirty minutes away and Sarah spent the time telling him what fun it was going to be. Robert couldn't believe she was just doing this just to keep his spirits up, but what sort of future could they have?
Robert had trouble backing off the truck when they arrived, but after some undignified scrabbling he managed it. Jennifer's husband and daughter came out to meet them.
Jennifer's daughter was about four years old and she was ecstatic to see another centaur with her aunt. "Can you take me for a ride, Aunt Sarah?"
"Okay, hop on, Ashley."
The child scrambled onto Sarah's back and together they shot off across the field.
"She wants to be a centaur herself," explained Jennifer, "I have a feeling she'll still feel that way when she reaches eighteen and can decide to undergo the transformation."
"Does that worry you?" Robert asked.
"Not really, I'm used to your kind now. Back when Sarah first decided to go through with though, I just couldn't believe it. When I first saw her after the change my eyes nearly popped out of my head."
"Yeah, I know what you mean." He cursed himself for the way that sounded.
Jennifer laughed. "I thought I could see some chemistry between you. It's been too long since Sarah dated and you do seem made for each other."
"We're just friends," he mumbled, a little embarrassed.
Jennifer persisted, "She's really taken a fancy to you."
"She has?" Robert's spirits rose despite the knowledge that he had no real chance with Sarah.
"Yeah, she told me on the phone that you were very cute."
Robert was going red, "I haven't known her that long and we're not dating or anything." he said hastily. It sounded lame even to him.
"Yet," replied Jennifer. "I know my sister and I can read your face like an open book."
"Stop teasing the poor guy, Jenny." Jennifer's husband told her with a smile on his face.
Sarah thundered past. Ashley was squealing in delight as she held on tight to her aunt.
"They'll keep at this for hours. Do you want a bite to eat? I know what sort of appetites centaurs have."
"Thank you. I am feeling a bit peckish. I still haven't got used to how much I eat as a centaur."
They walked over to a bench outside the house. Jennifer had set out a delicious selection of vegetables and fruit. Over the next half-hour they chatted. Sarah was careful not to go to far from the house and stayed in view of Ashley's parents at all times.
Robert couldn't help but admire Sarah's athletic body as she ran. If only he didn't have that damn Gifford's Condition. He began to feel turned on again as he watched her gallop across the field. She truly was very beautiful.
Eventually, she slowed down to a walk and came over to Robert and the others.
Ashley was in heaven. "I'm going to be a centaur one day," she proudly announced to Robert.
"Yes! I'm going to have hooves and a tail and I'm going to run through the fields all day long!" She looked up at Sarah. "Can I ride you again, auntie."
"Give me a chance to get my breath back, kid." Sarah told her.
Ashley looked disappointed, then she turned to Robert. "Can I ride you, mister?"
"Well...uh...I don't know."
"It'll be okay," Jennifer told him, "just make sure she holds on tight."
Robert felt a little uneasy as he lifted the child onto his back. The last thing he wanted to do was to drop her and ruin the whole weekend. Ashley held on tight, but Robert put his hands around her to steady her just in case. "Ready?" he asked.
"Yes," Ashley announced. "Go horsy!"
He moved slowly at first and then picked up speed. Ashley seemed to be holding on with no trouble and she was fully enjoying herself. He just wished she'd stop shrieking so loudly.
Sarah wiped herself down with a towel and watched Robert and Ashley galloping around the field.
"He is quite cute," her sister remarked. "It's good to see you with someone after all this time.
"I'm not going out with him. I'm just helping him through a difficult patch, that's all."
"If you say so," Jennifer replied, sounding utterly unconvinced.
That night, Robert slept in a downstairs bedroom. It's oversized bed had obviously been put there for Sarah when she stayed over. Sarah was sleeping in the dining room on several spare mattresses. He felt a little uncomfortable taking her bed, but she wouldn't allow him to sleep elsewhere as he was the guest.
The bed was very comfortable, but Robert had a sleepless night. He felt restless and for some reason he was aroused for most of the time. When dawn finally broke, he had had enough. As quietly as he could he went outside into the cool morning air.
Robert felt the need to burn off energy and was still aroused. He decided to run off some of his energy. It still amazed him how fast he could move and he covered several fields in minutes. He wasn't aware of the heavy clouds in the sky until it started to rain. He took refuge in an empty farm building to wait until the weather cleared.
As he watched by the door he saw someone running across the field towards him. It was another centaur, so it could only be Sarah. She caught up with him and ducked into the building.
"Damn!" she exclaimed. "I'm soaked through!"
"Were you following me?" Robert asked.
"Actually, I was. Where were you going?"
"I couldn't sleep." Robert told her.
"Couldn't get comfortable?" she asked.
"No, not exactly. I've been feeling a little odd since last night."
"Oh? What do you mean by odd?"
"It's a little embarrassing. It doesn't matter." He was beginning to wish he hadn't mentioned it.
"I'll be the judge of that. It could be something important and you don't have to worry about shocking me."
"Well...ever since last night...I've been excited...you know... sexually."
Realization dawned on Sarah. "Ah, I know exactly what the problem is. Horses have a breeding cycle and that couldn't be completely edited out of the centaur form."
"You mean I'm in heat?!" Robert couldn't believe he was hearing this. "This just gets worse and worse!"
"Relax, you can easily control yourself. You won't go and lose control when you're around stallions or male centaurs. There's a pill nearly all female centaurs use that reduce the effects down to nothing."
Robert's face brightened, "Thank God! Can I have some of yours then?" Sarah looked a little embarrassed. He sighed, "you're one of the few who doesn't use them, aren't you?"
"I don't use them because I don't need them."
"Why not!" she said in surprise. "Robert, you've been watching me all week and you still haven't noticed?"
Sarah held Robert's hand, "I have Gifford's Condition as well."
Robert froze, "You mean, you're...um...a man."
"No!" she shouted in mock anger and gave his head a playful slap. "I still think of myself as female. That's why I understand what you're going through and why I've helped you so much."
"That's not the only reason is it?" Robert said, "I know I got myself changed for a really stupid reason, but we have got something going haven't we?"
Sarah backed off a little, "yeah, I suppose we have and you are the first man with Gifford's that I've ever fallen for."
Robert found himself getting even more aroused. "This isn't quite what I intended, but I really want to do it with you. Even if you are on top instead of me."
She sighed, "that's just the hormones talking."
"Maybe just a bit, but you want to just as much as me, don't you?"
Sarah sighed. The thing was, Robert was absolutely right. She had known many centaurs with Gifford's Condition, but she had never been as strongly attracted to any of them as she was to Robert. She had only had sex several times since becoming a centaur and she had never really been able to fully enjoy it. Her desire was increasing and she could feel her member growing. "I do want to make love to you, Robert. I just don't want to ruin what we have."
"You won't," he said with a smile and kissed her. Robert could feel her aroused nipples through the fabric of her bikini top. He reached behind Sarah and undid her top. As he pulled it away he caressed one of her breasts with his hand.
Sarah felt herself weakening. He was very cute and it had been so long since the last time she had had sex. "Okay, Robert. I'll give you what you want, just don't complain when I fill you up."
Sarah stepped away and Robert got his first view of her erect penis. His head was buzzing from what he was about to do. It wasn't quite what he had intended, but at last he was going to do it with Sarah. Even so, half of him wanted to go no further. He fought down his fear, he couldn't afford to drive away Sarah. She was the most important part of his life now.
Sarah moved to Robert's rear. He lifted his tail out of the way and steadied himself. Sarah reared up and then down on to Robert's back. Slowly, she worked her way forward until her penis reached the entrance to Robert's vagina.
Robert was surprised how heavy Sarah was, but he could bare the weight. He almost bucked when he felt Sarah's member reach his own private parts. His arousal and determination to not spoil the moment kept him going. Moments later Sarah began sliding inside of him.
He was unable to stop himself gasping as he was penetrated. It was so utterly alien compared to the last time he had made love, but it felt somehow right. His body was doing what it had been designed for.
Sarah leaned over and kissed his neck, "You okay?" she asked.
"It's not what I...oh...planned, but don't stop!"
"I had absolutely no intention of doing so."
Robert was lost in the immensely strange yet fantastic feeling of penetration. He reached behind him and stroked Sarah as she rode him. He felt himself building to a climax and when it hit his legs almost gave way. The sensation washed through him and Sarah wasn't finished yet. Despite the ecstasy he felt, part of him still felt some revulsion to what he was doing. If Sarah's human half had been so obviously female he wouldn't have been able to stand it.
She gripped his shoulders and her nails dug in. She was near her
own climax and she knew she wasn't going to able to hold on much longer.
The pressure became unbearable and her human half collapsed forward onto
Robert's. As she gripped him tight she orgasmed.